Last Week's Projections
(12-4) Straight Up - 81.2%
(11-5) Against The Spread - 56.2%
For The Season
(141-83) Straight Up - 62.9%
(127-93-4) Against The Spread - 57.7%
Green Bay at Minnesota (-3),
Boy there had to be some happy folks out there that had
Culpepper as their QB during the fantasy playoffs last week. He
came up big with a 400 yard 3 TD effort. It looks as though Randy
Moss might be on track as well he looked great on that 82-yard bomb
from Culpepper. He really put on the afterburners and left some
folks in the dust. Interesting to see that Tice went with Bennett
last week instead of Smith. Also I hear he will be doing the same
things this week as Bennett gets the nod again. There was nobody
that felt better on Sunday than Tice when Detroit gagged on the
extra point with 7 seconds left. It was looking like another Minnesota
loss for a second. Now it looks like Favre is the only thing standing
in their way of a divisional title. Start Culpepper, Moss, Burleson,
Wiggins, and Bennett if you need a RB
Disappointing game for Favre. They need that win to keep pace with
the Vikings. They just could not stop Fred Taylor as he really ran
without much opposition all day. Favre put up great numbers but
turnovers will kill you every time. The Packers are going to have
to learn to stop the run or they can forget it. The big problem
with this team if they make the playoffs will be the defense. They
just can't stop anyone. They will give up at least 300 yards to
Culpepper and will give up at least 125 total yards rushing. I don't
see anybody in their secondary that can handle Moss or Burleson.
Expect a big game from just about everyone in this one, as these
are two horrible defenses. Start, Favre, Walker, Green, Driver and
hope for the best.
Final Score: Vikings 32, Packers
Oakland (+8) at Kansas City,
Another game of high scoring possibilities. Both team have
potentially dangerous offenses and no defense. Starting with KC
who really put the boot to Denver this week to the tune of 45-17.
Trent Green had a good game with 224 yards and 3 TDS, no interceptions,
and only had three incomplete passes. Larry Johnson has really helped
fantasy owners the last couple of weeks as he looks like mini-Holmes
right now. He had another spectacular game with 150 yards and 3
TDS. He will get the starting spot for the rest of the year it looks
like. Kennison has been another bright spot as he had 101 yards
and 2 TDS. I think you will see much of the same this week. A lot
of Larry Johnson and a little of Trent Green thrown in. Look for
Green, Johnson, and Gonzo to all have big games.
Oakland did what I thought they would do the previous week; score
in bunches. They outlasted the hot Billy Volek and the Titans from
Tennessee. Collins had a ridiculous game with 371 yards passing
and 5 TDS. There was no reason to run the ball as Porter had a season
high 148 yards and three of those TD passes. Look for more of the
same in this one. No defense and plenty of offense. Even though
it is in KC, and there is always bad blood between these two, I
can't see the Chiefs being able to take them by more than a touchdown.
No way. Start Collins and Porter.
Final Score: Chiefs 30, Raiders
Denver (-4) at Tennessee,
With both Steve McNair and Chris Brown out the rest of the season,
the Titans will have lots of trouble keeping pace with the Broncos.
But that certainly hasn't stopped Drew Bennett from going absolutely
nuts three weeks in a row. On Sunday, these teams gave up 45 and
40, respectively, so this should get exciting for fantasy owners
looking to ice their championships.
The Broncos should get great starts from Jake Plummer, Rod Smith,
Ashley Lelie and whomever starts at RB, whether it's the injured
Tatum Bell (shoulder) or Reuben Droughns. While the defense has
been getting lit up lately, IDP guys have emerged as solid starts,
including LBs Al Wilson, D.J. Williams, and Donnie Spragan and
DBs Kenoy Kennedy and John Lynch.
The Titans have a few decent fantasy starters as well, including
backup QB Billy Volek, WRs Drew Bennett and Derrick Mason, and
maybe even backup RB Antowain Smith, who is playing in place of
the injured Brown. On defense, the only real consistent performer
is LB Keith Bulluck, although DB Lamont Thompson could blow up
Final Score: Broncos 38, Titans
Atlanta (+4.5) at New
Orleans, 1:00 p.m.
If Michael Vick can't go, the Saints have a chance at prevailing
coming off a big win in Tampa Bay - where they stayed alive in
the playoff race.
The Falcons don't have much going for them in this one a la fantasy
matters except Vick, RB Warrick Dunn and TE Alge Crumpler. Vick
may sit this game out and turn it over to rookie QB Matt Schaub,
so look elsewhere if you have the luxury. On defense, the defensive
line should continue to dominate, and IDP starters should include
DL Rod Coleman, LB Keith Brooking and DB Bryan Scott.
The Saints aren't what I would call a team of destiny, but they
will see good performances this week from Deuce McAllister and
Joe Horn. Aaron Brooks might get forced into some mistakes, and
Donté Stallworth is unreliable. IDP options include DL Charles
Grant, DB Jay Bellamy, DL Darren Howard and LB Courtney Watson.
Final Score: Falcons 24, Saints
Baltimore (+6) at Pittsburgh,
A must-win for the Ravens, this matchup should see lots of defense
and maybe even an overtime field goal.
The Ravens had the misfortune of playing a pretty tough schedule
and losing a few they should have won against lesser opponents,
but they did dish Pittsburgh their only loss of the season thus
far and match up well against them. While Jamal Lewis is an okay
fantasy start, the Steelers will point most of their front seven
in his direction on every play. Expect the unexpected in the passing
game, with WR Kevin Johnson and TE Todd Heap getting loose for
a couple scores. IDP options include LB Ray Lewis, DB Ed Reed,
LB/DL Adalius Thomas and LB Terrell Suggs.
The Steelers won't see much from Big Ben, but will get solid games
from RB Jerome Bettis and WR Hines Ward. Since there's not a lot
of scoring to go around, that probably concludes the short list
of decent fantasy starts. On defense, I'd go with DB Troy Polamalu,
LB Clark Haggans, LB James Farrior and LB Joey Porter.
Final Score: Ravens 20, Steelers
Chicago (+6) at Detroit,
Both these teams are 5-9 with no place to go, and could get into
a pseudo-shootout if Detroit gets ahead early. But the Bears only
scored 5 points last week, so keep that in mind.
The Lions Joey Harrington is frustrated young QB who lost an emotional
game on Sunday. Look for him and WR Roy Williams to link up quite
a bit at home versus Chicago, with decent games from RB Kevin
Jones and WR Az-Zahir Hakim. IDP options include DL James Hall,
LB Teddy Lehman, LB James Davis and DB Brock Marion.
The Bears don't really have any solid fantasy starters, but may
see something from QB Chad Hutchinson, RB Thomas Jones and WR
David Terrell this week. Then again, if you are considering playing
those clowns, you probably wouldn't have made your league's playoffs.
On defense, I'd go with DBs Mike Green and Jerry Azumah, LBs Hunter
Hillenmeyer and Lance Briggs and DL Alex Brown.
Final Score: Lions 27, Bears
San Diego (+7) at Indianapolis,
There are lots of possibilities in this intriguing game, which
could make or break a bye week for one of these teams.
The Chargers have a solid crew of impact fantasy players, all
of which should get the nod on Sunday. They include QB Drew Brees,
RB LaDainian Tomlinson, TE Antonio Gates and WR Eric Parker. After
last week's modest 21-0 shutout, the Chargers will be looking
to open it up. On defense, there's LBs Donnie Edwards, Randall
Godfrey, Steve Foley and DBs Terrence Kiel and Quentin Jammer
- who should get a lot of work against Indy.
The Colts defense will be put to the test, but everybody on offense,
including Manning, Edgerrin James, Reggie Wayne, Marvin Harrison,
Brandon Stokely, Dallas Clark and Marcus Pollard, are all good
plays this week. Of course, someone will emerge with Manning and
James as the top dogs, but you know that going in. The best IDP
options include DL Dwight Freeney, LB Cato June and DB Mike Doss.
Final Score: Colts 34, Chargers
Houston (+7) at Jacksonville,
The previously mentioned Jaguars really had a big win at Lambeau
in sub-zero temperatures to take Favre and the Packers. A really
inspired performance by Fred Taylor. He really took the game into
his own hands by rushing for that 165 yards and carrying the rock
for 22 times. Leftwich was not great but it would be hard for
anyone in those conditions. It more about survival than great
plays. The defense is what impressed me the most. Although they
left Javon Walker run crazy they really caused havoc by forcing
three interceptions and two forced fumbles. That was really the
game right there. Saying that however I think the Texans can hang
within a TD. Their defense is decent as well. Play Leftwich, Smith,
Houston did what I expected. They really shut down the Bears and
Chad Hutchinson with only allowing 220 yards of offense and no
TDS. It was not the greatest game to watch but they controlled
it and that is what gets you in the win column. Turnovers were
the killer in this game as well. The Houston defense forced two
interceptions and two forced fumbles. One of those was returned
60 yards for a score. Offensively it was not all that pretty but
Davis had 95 yards and a TD. Gaffney looked good in this one finally
going over the 100-yard mark. Andre Johnson has disappeared for
owners lately. I haven't seen a great game for him in quite some
time. Look for them to keep this one close and Davis to see a
lot of action. Play Davis and Carr only if you have no other option.
Final Score: Jags 24, Texans
N.Y. Giants (+6) at Cincinnati,
I suppose you see a common theme with Cliff this week. I like
the dogs to hold it within reason. The Giants impressed me with
marvelous effort short-handed against the mighty Steelers. I think
everyone knew that the Steelers would come out on top. But they
certainly had to work for it. Was that a first round pick out
there last week? It is about time. I didn't hear anyone bitching
about the protection this week. Say what you want, Manning has
just plain choked the last couple of weeks against some great
defenses. He started settling down and played decent in this one.
Not stellar numbers but better than that horrible performance
last week. The special teams of the Giants really kept them close
in this one. I think they have enough to hang with the Bengals
for 4 quarters. Keep it around a field goal. Other than Barber
I don't see anyone I would start on this team.
No way the Bengals were going to beat the red-hot Bills. That
defense is way too strong. Kitna was thrown to the wolves and
looked like it turning the ball over twice. The bright spot was
a strong performance by Rudi-Rudi. Chad Johnson was a no-show
in this one. Houshmandzadeh may be playing so well that Warrick
may become expendable when he returns. Kitna will get the start
again and I think they will be able to move the ball against the
Giants but both of these teams are in similar situations at this
point. Big injuries and QB's that are a little rusty. I think
the Bengals will win but not by over 6. Start Rudi and C. Johnson.
Final Score: Bengals 28, Giants
(+7) at Seattle, 4:15 p.m
I don't think Seattle really wants to win the division. They got
absolutely pounded by the Jets. Hasselbeck had a tough time with
the Jets defense. He got injured and the word is he will play
with the injury this week. The fact was they just couldn't stop
the Jets from doing anything. It was painful to watch. I think
it is safe to say the Seahawks may be the most disappointing team
this year. They allowed an astounding 230 yards rushing and 253
yards passing with a total of 5 TDS. Alexander really wasn't a
factor with only 77 yards rushing. The Seahawks seem to have a
tough time moving the ball against good defenses. They have weapons
but I have to think the Cardinals defense may put them up a good
fight. I don't know if I would start Hasselbeck with that injury
which may affect players like Jackson and Robinson as he comes
back from suspension this week. I would stick to Hasselbeck and
The Cardinals are getting better ladies and gents. This was probably
their biggest win of the year as they throttled the Rams 31-7.
I think the benching Green gave McCown may have worked. He had
a great game with 287 yards and 2 TDS. The biggest deal was no
interceptions. He did lose a fumble but the defense really kept
the Rams from getting back into it. The Cardinals chased Chandler
in the first quarter and Martin completed less than 50% of his
passes. They held Faulk to 22 yards rushing. I think the Cardinals
have a good formula and may put up a pretty good fight against
the Seahawks. It is possible they win this one if Hasselbeck is
not fully recovered. No fantasy players from this team though.
Final Score: Seahawks 21, Cardinals
(+3) at Tampa Bay, 4:15 p.m
The Panthers almost pulled it off against the Falcons but they
forgot about the Vick factor. How you allow him to score at the
end of regulation on fourth down is beyond me. The Falcons defense
is tough and Delhomme did a great job a carving them up. He had
340 yards and 2 TDS. Muhammad continues to catch balls all over
the place. He had another great game with 135 yards and a score.
It won't come as easy against the Bucs. I doubt Jake will have
another 300 yard game. But Peppers will have a field day. I don't
think this guy can be stopped. Gosh is he good or what? They really
need this one to lock down a playoff spot. Play Delhomme and Muhammad.
Goings may have tough sledding in Tampa.
That was a lot of points the Bucs had to give up against the Saints
last week. They blew it. I read in the paper today that there
are problems in the clubhouse. A veteran named Rice decided that
Gruden might be a little too easy on the practices. No discipline.
That doesn't sound good being the Gruden's biggest asset was supposed
to be his motivating personality. I suppose the motivation is
lacking right now. The Bucs did not look good last week. They
should have done much more than post 118 yards worth of passing.
That was against the worse defense in the league. I think there
will be too many distractions for the Bucs to win this one. Look
for them to take a loss.
Final Score: Panthers 27, Bucs
Washington at Dallas
(+3), 4:15 p.m.
Dallas played maybe their best game of the year against the Eagles
last week. Give them so credit for really bringing out the big
hits and playing some D against one of the leagues best in McNabb.
Even when Owens was in the game the Cowboys were playing well.
They just couldn't put up enough offense to overcome the Eagles
and lost by 5. They say that Vinny may be the man again this week.
Jones will have a good game against the Skins but don't look for
an offensive explosion by anyone, as both of these teams are offensive
losers. Jason Whitten should find some holes in that Skins D.
Washington put together a win against maybe the worst team in
the league in the 49ers. Ramsey did enough to win but he has much
more to learn. Portis was run like a rented mule as he carried
the pigskin 35 times. Looked like John Riggins out there. Banging
out barely a 3.2 yard per carry average. Gardner decided to catch
a few passes and went over 100 yards. I think they will try the
same approach this week by pounding the ball at the Cowboys. Look
for another 30 carries from Portis. But I think Ramsey will have
a tough time throwing the ball. It will end up as a contest between
Portis and Jones and I give the nod to the home-field guy. Start
Portis, Jones, Johnson, and Witten.
Final Score: Cowboys 30 Redskins
(-11) at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m.
This won't be close, and since the Buffalo defense is awesome
and everybody on San Fran is insignificant, the preview will be
The Bills should get decent starts from Drew Bledsoe, Eric Moulds,
Lee Evans and whomever starts at RB, whether it's the injured
Willis McGahee, the relegated Travis Henry, or the nubile Shaud
Williams. On defense, there's LB Takeo Spikes, LB London Fletcher,
DL Aaron Schobel and DBs Terrence McGee and Lawyer Milloy.
The 49ers are injured physically and emotionally, and nobody is
really worthy of a start except TE Eric Johnson, and maybe WRs
Brandon Lloyd and Cedrick Wilson. Defensively, however, there
should be a few guys cleaning up the tackles, including DL Bryant
Young, LB Derek Smith and DB Tony Parrish.
Final Score: Bills 27, 49ers
New England (-2.5) at
N.Y. Jets, 4:05 p.m.
Brady, you got some 'splainin to do! The Patriots looked quite
human against the struggling Dolphins on Monday night, who had
simply pride to play for. Nevertheless, I'd go with Brady, Corey
Dillon, David Patten and Deion Branch this week in New Jersey.
The Pats will look to open this one up on offense, blitz heavily
on defense and get the Jets to turn the ball over as quickly as
possible. IDP options include DL Richard Seymour, LB Tedy Bruschi
and DB Rodney Harrison.
The Jets QB Chad Pennington is dinged up and facing a tough defense.
The short list of solid fantasy starts includes Curtis Martin
and Santana Moss, with Pennington an iffy addition. IDP guys include
DL Shaun Ellis, LB Eric Barton LB Jonathan Vilma and DB Erik Coleman.
Final Score: Patriots 23, Jets
Cleveland (+7) at Miami,
Two 3-11 teams on ESPN's Sunday Night Football? Observers of the
karmic cycle would say this has been coming to Joe Theismann and
Paul Maguire for a long time. Unfortunately, this horrific game
will make or break some poor slob's fantasy football season. The
Browns won't see much happen on offense, so stay away from everyone
except possibly Lee Suggs as a #3 RB or Antonio Bryant on a hunch
as a #3 WR. I'm not kidding, be careful. IDP standouts will include
DL Kenard Lang, LB Barry Gardner and DB Anthony Henry.
The Dolphins might make something happen on offense, but starting
QB A.J. Feeley is still quite risky. I'd stick with TE Randy McMichael,
WR Chris Chambers and maybe RB Travis Minor. On defense, there's
DL Jason Taylor, LB Zach Thomas and DB Sammy Knight.
Final Score: Dolphins 24, Browns
Philadelphia (+3) at
St. Louis, 9:00 p.m
You have got to be kidding me? I know that Owners was a huge part
of the offense but this team is bigger than one guy. Give them
some time to adjust and they will be just fine. But to be 3 point
underdogs to the Rams with Bulger trying to come back from injury
makes so sensed to me. The Eagles had a tough time getting by
Dallas but they were just shell-shocked. They will regroup this
week and should have no problem taking care of the Rams. People
forget that they went to the Conference championship without Owens
last year. Look for McNabb, Westbrook, and Mitchell to have good
Must be embarrassing in St Louis this week. Getting the crapped
kicked out of you by the Cardinals has to be the low point. They
need Bulger to come back big time. Without him this team is horrible.
I think Faulk may be done. I see no burst in the way he runs and
his injuries have just taken too much of a toll on him. Jackson
should take over the load next year. The Eagles will come with
everything this week because they will have no respect for the
Rams running game. Bulger will turn the ball over at least twice
and the Rams defense will get torched by McNabb, Play Bulger,
Bruce, and Holt in this one.
Final Score: Eagles 24, Rams